Clean and Safe Streets

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1 Greater Camden Partnership (GCP) is a non-profit organization founded in 2001 that works to bring together leaders from the private, public, and non-profit sectors in order to design and implement innovative revitalization projects in the city of Camden, New Jersey. GCP s approach mirrors that of other successful Eds and Meds anchor-based urban revitalization efforts, though such an approach in Camden requires the coordination of several smaller institutions rather than the reliance on a single large entity. Presently, GCP s project portfolio includes: a downtown business improvement district clean and safe program; development of several large transit-oriented real estate projects; a vacant-lot greening and maintenance initiative; public-space arts programming; corridor marketing/retail attraction; and local sourcing initiatives. GCP has developed a detailed five-part model that aims to leverage the power of Camden s anchor institutions in an effort to bring economic development to the city. This model includes: clean and safe streets; stable residential neighborhoods adjacent to the anchors; commercial corridors that offer an attractive mix of amenity retail; a vibrant arts and cultural offering; and human capital programming that builds capacity among Camden s residents. Clean and Safe Streets Camden Special Services District (CSSD): Based on Philadelphia s Center City and University City Improvement Districts, the CSSD is a clean and safe program centered in downtown Camden. Over twenty full-time workers, all Camden residents, participate in cleaning Camden s business corridors, removing graffiti from throughout the city, and landscaping the downtown area. Furthermore, all workers are uniformed and able to provide information about Camden to visitors, thereby contributing to a city-wide sense of a security. Most importantly, the CSSD program continues to provide job opportunities to Camden residents, which further reinforces GCP s commitment to the revitalization of Camden. Stable Neighborhoods Kroc Center: For more than four years, GCP has led a stakeholder group in the effort to develop a 120,000 s.f. community center on the former Harrison Avenue Landfill site in Cramer Hill. Although the Salvation Army now has a full-time staff team that is managing the development, GCP continues to support the effort in the areas of fundraising, government approvals and community outreach. The Camden Kroc Center is slated to open in the 4 th Quarter of Haddon Avenue Transit Village: Working alongside Lourdes Hospital, the Delaware River Port Authority and a private developer, GCP is working to develop a 15-acre mixed-use transit village on a former industrial strip across from Lourdes Hospital. The project will be anchored by Camden s first new grocery store in more than a generation and will also include 400 units of market rate housing, a new parking garage and an office building for Lourdes employees who are moving in from the suburbs. Vacant Lot Stabilization Program: Camden City s extraordinary number of vacant lots was cited as one of the community s leading priorities. As such, GCP executed a vacant lot greening and maintenance program that cleaned and greened eighty-one vacant lots in the neighborhood

2 and now employs two Camden residents to maintain these lots. Over the next six months, GCP will green another 100 lots under a partnership with the Camden Redevelopment Agency and the Federal Government. Camden Employer-Assisted Housing (CEAH): GCP s EAH Program is a key initiative in stabilizing the anchor neighborhoods. GCP is proposing a collaborative program that seeks to leverage existing/proposed public programs, private resources and institutional participation to incentivize anchor-institution employees to live in Camden. Thriving Commercial Corridors Broadway Main Street: The Broadway Main Street program seeks to transform the Broadway corridor into a cultural and commercial hub which will attract residents and visitors from all neighborhoods. Toward this end, the program provides access to tax incentives and information on resources available through government programs, assists the CSSD in beautifying business corridors by removing litter and producing street banners, and assists in developing a long-term plan for the design of the business district. Urban Land Institute- Technical Assistance Program (ULI-TAP): Camden was recently selected for a ULI-TAP study, which GCP will lead. This program will bring ten leading development professionals from the region to Camden to make specific planning recommendations for the development of a retail concentration in the University District. Plans have been finalized with ULI for the study to take place in October Human Capital Development Local Sourcing: In January 2010, Rutgers-Camden pledged to double its purchasing from Camden businesses over the next five years. Working under a grant from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, GCP is organizing the city s anchor institutions to join in this pledge. GCP s role in this project is to provide technical assistance to local businesses, organize sourcing fairs, provide anchors with a directory of local businesses, and facilitate the sharing of lessons learned among the institutions. Workforce Development GCP recently completed a study of a pilot program that would employ certain at-risk populations (e.g., ex-offenders, youth, etc.) as workers in the Camden Special Services District Program. This initiative would allow existing clean and safe, business development, and workforce funding streams to work in synergy by providing a source of employment and training while improving the condition of the business environment in the Downtown. Following the study of how this program would work with existing re-entry and Workforce Investment Board programs, GCP is currently seeking funding for implementation. Education: One of GCP s goals is to work with the anchor institutions to create K-12 educational opportunities that serve two purposes. The first goal is to allow existing Camden residents to access the opportunities that are likely to be created in a resurgent Camden. The

3 second goal is to ensure that young families can remain in Camden when their children reach school-age. GCP is working on several fronts to achieve this goal. We have partnered with two of the city s charter schools to help develop new school sites. We are working with Rowan University and the Center for Family Services on a Promise Neighborhood Initiative for the new Lanning Square Elementary School; and we are working toward the implementation of a policy recommendation for a joint Rutgers/Rowan effort to centralize, coordinate and measure anchor participation in schools across the city. Vibrant Arts & Culture Art Gallery Series: GCP s Holiday Art Gallery and Camden Spring Art Gallery Series blend art events with development projects by utilizing the city s vacant commercial and retail spaces to showcase local and regional talent. This program also seeks to improve the environment for local retail and to attract new residents. Arts Roundtable: The Arts Roundtable brings together many of Camden s most prominent artists, art administrators, and community leaders, while drawing on the experience and resources of the public and private sectors to assist in the planning and implementation of arts initiatives in the Camden City. Summer Concert Series: Organized by GCP and sponsored by Campbell Soup, Cooper Hospital, Symphony in C, and the City of Camden, the Summer Concert Series presented a series of five outdoor concerts in Cooper Commons Park. The event featured a variety of musical styles and drew its audience from Camden s residents, workforce, and students. Job Title or Position: GCP Summer Intern Expectations/ Responsibilities of the Position: GCP will work with the student to outline a specific project related to our economic development work and allow them take ownership over the project formulating the project s strategy, overseeing its development, and creating tools to measure its success. The internship will also include the opportunity to work in support of the operation of the organization through some of the projects detailed in our five-part model. Through these roles the student will be provided with the opportunity to work directly with small neighborhood businesses, community organizations, and various city government departments. Qualifications: The student should have strong interpersonal, critical thinking and writing skills. The student will be required to work directly with a range of stakeholders from community businesses and organizations to corporate funders. Spanish proficiency would be valuable but is not a requirement. Working Conditions:

4 The student would be expected to work a standard work week. Occasionally community meetings occur in the early evening. The dress code ranges from business to business casual depending on the day s activities. The student will have his/her own workstation as part of an open-bay arrangement. A car is not necessary for the job, though access to a car may be helpful for grocery shopping, etc. The GCP will work with the student to find nearby housing, as the office is adjacent to the campus of Rutgers-Camden, and there will be opportunities for a summer sublet. Camden is located on the east bank of the Delaware River, directly opposite Philadelphia. Camden has its share of entertainment options, with several local bars/restaurants, an aquarium, minor league baseball stadium, and the region s leading outdoor concert venue all within walking distance. Also, there is a subway line that runs through the downtown and provides access to the major entertainment and cultural attractions in Philadelphia in less than ten minutes. Additionally, a light rail train line runs through the downtown to the Amtrak/NJTransit station in Trenton, NJ, with direct links to New York City. On-Site Supervisor: David Foster ( 98), Project Director (856) David Foster, a 1998 W&L graduate, will be overseeing this program for the GCP. He has experience managing summer internship programs in his previous job as an attorney at a large law firm in Philadelphia and is committed to making sure that students have a structured and meaningful summer experience. He would take responsibility for working with the staff in Lexington to ensure a successful placement for all students in Camden, including assistance with housing and other logistics. Dave is also the president of the Philadelphia region s alumni chapter and will work to bring local alumni together to meet with the students during the summer. Supervision Plan: The GCP is a relatively small organization, and the student will be working closely with the supervisor on a daily basis. There will be many opportunities outside of the specific job description to attend meetings on other issues/projects related to development in the city. Preparation: No background checks or physical exams are required. The GCP will compile and provide background materials that will be helpful (but not required) reading. Materials will include (but not be limited to: BIDs: Business Improvement Districts (2nd ed.) by Lawrence O. Houstoun, Jr. (Urban Land Institute) Compilation of BID articles from leading journals and trade publications (to be compiled) Camden After the Fall, Howard Gillette, Jr. (Univ. of Penn. Press) Poet of Poverty (Movie, 2008)

5 Additional Comments: The city of Camden consistently ranks among the poorest cities in the United States, yet it has a plethora of resources that offer a great deal of hope for an economic rebirth. It is located directly across the river from the sixth largest city in America, has extraordinary infrastructure and transportation access by rail, sea and air, and is surrounded by riverfront on three sides. After decades of severe decline, the level of economic activity has been on the rise, with more than five hundred million dollars of reinvestment over the past five years. But, there is still a great deal to be done. People in Camden often say that it is as if someone took all of the major problems of the inner city drugs, crime, a failing education system, public health issues, lack of economic advancement and dropped them on a small town (the city s population has only about 80,000 residents). That is to say, Camden offers a front-row look at the major issues of urban poverty in a setting that is small enough for a student to truly get involved and make a difference. For a program that proposes to study poverty, it is (unfortunately) difficult to think of a better place to do it. Having a strong local W&L alumni network as a valuable and available resource makes the placement location even more compelling.

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